Imagine a student working part-time in an advertising firm, receiving an email with the rest of her team. The email contains clippings of their rivals’ work in a bid to “inspire the team.” She believes this is the wrong way to spur imagination, so she tells her boss she will send her own inspirational email regularly. She begins sending a weekly newsletter to her 7 team members. Her team finds value in it and soon they start forwarding it to their friends. She sets up a website to host all of her content. That website, one of my favourites, is now called Brain Pickings and its creator is Maria Popova.
Describing herself simply as a “reader who writes”, and still continuing to write about the things she likes and the ideas that stimulate her, she follows a rigorous regimen posting 3 articles everyday and scheduling 50 tweets a day. When asked how she manages to create so much content, in an interview with Copyblogger, she said, “I do most of my long-form reading at the gym (pen and Post-Its and all), skim the news while eating (a questionable health habit, no doubt), and listen to philosophy, science, or design podcasts while commuting on my bike…”
She is someone I call the “Unconscious Creator.” Theunconscious creator constantly creates and does not feel stressed about creating. There is pressure of course, but no stress. That is because the Unconscious Creator is able to collect and connect ideas from everywhere. A deep conversation with a friend, a sign briefly glimpsed in the neighbourhood store, snatches of conversation you eavesdrop on when travelling in the bus, an observation you make about your kid, a thought that suddenly strikes you in the shower… they all serve as inspiration for your content.
So, how do you go from Conscious Creator to Unconscious Creator?
By leveraging the power of ritual and being extremely disciplined about it. Any good creator, before becoming a prolific creator in public, must be a prolific thinker in private. And just like your muscles need a daily to workout to grow, your ideas and opinions too need a daily workout. The rituals described yesterday combined with the discipline to use the 4T model I described on Wednesday, regularly will help you become unconscious creators.
That’s it. Alas, there is no secret to do this quickly. But that does not mean it can’t be fun! Tomorrow, I’ll share with you some ideas to gamify your content production.
Building the creation muscle,